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Science and Engineering at The University of Edinburgh

School of GeoSciences

Research Facilities

The Results

The Facility recommends the use of EpoxiCure, SpeciFix-20 or EpoFix for SIMS analysis

Summary

Ideally, the resins should have a low viscosity, set quickly, set hard, be compatible at high vacuum and contain no element that will compromise the SIMS chemical or isotopic analysis. In addition, it should be suitable for petrological study, imaging (e.g. cathodoluminescence (CL), backscatter electron (BSE)) and electron micro-probe analysis (EPMA). No resin meets all these requirements.

The table below presents a star rating, culminating in an Engwell score. Clearly, some materials or analyses may put a different importance on any of the properties.

  • Viscosity5-star 5 Stars for the viscosity closest to water
  • Hardness5-star 5 Stars for the resin closest to the hardness of common rock forming minerals.
  • Cure Time5-star 5 Stars for shortest cure time
  • Composition5-star5 Stars for the cleanest composition that would not compromise a SIMS analysis
  • Cathodoluminescence5-star 5 Stars for the lowest luminescence
  • e-Beam Damage5-star 5 Stars for the most robust resin to e-beam bombardment
  • Bonding, Gap and Relief5-star 5 Stars for the best bonding, smallest gap and minimal polishing induced relief.


Epoxy Resin Viscosity
Vacuum Test
Hardness
Cure Time
Composition
Bonding
Gap
Relief
'Luminescence
e-beam Damage
Engwell Score
EpoThin 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
32
EpoHeat 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 5-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
34
EpoxiCure (Cured at Room Temperature) 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
40
EpoxiCure (Cured at 65oC) 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 3-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
33
TransOptic 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star Not Tested 1 1/2-star
ProbeMet 5-star 4-star Not Tested 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1/2-star Not Tested Not Tested
KonductoMet 5-star 4-star Not Tested 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 4-star Not Tested Not Tested
SpeciFix-20 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 4-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
36.5
EpoFix 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
36
Ciba Geigy MY778 & HY951 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
38
Robnor Resins PX771c 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
28
Korapox 439 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
24.5
Domestic Rapid Set Araldite 5-star Not Tested 3-star 2-star 1-star Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested
Domestic Araldite 5-star Not Tested 3-star 2-star 1-star Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested
Varian Torr Seal 5-star Not Tested Not Tested 2-star 1-star Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested Not Tested
Petropoxy 5-star 4-star 3-star 2-star 1-star 0-star 1/2-star 3-star 1 1/2-star 1 1/2-star
29

Comments

  • The Facility recommends the use of EpoxiCure, SpeciFix-20 or EpoFix for SIMS analysis, although other resins should be considered for specific requirements such as low viscosity.
  • Transoptic shatters samples during the pressure/heating procedure and we wonder why it is suggested for delicate samples. It produces a network of gaps in contact with the sample and the surfaces of the pressure vessel. Its pump-down time is long and blisters badly under electron beam impact.
  • Konductomet also fractures samples during the pressure/heating procedure.
  • Rapid-set araldite has a high viscosity and contains C, O, Al and Cl as well as sulphur.
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